Thursday, January 28, 2016

Rainy Days

The weather is playing tricks on us! The past few days have been filled with lots and lots and lots of rain! With a few tornado warning we've been sticking inside the house and we've been warding off cabin fever. I'm really a huge rain fan and can still find things to go/see/do but with so many weather warnings we've been safe and not sorry. We've cooked and cleaning (both real and pretend), watched a few movies, had popcorn picnics, hide and hides (we don't hide and seek...we just hide...and then hide again), built a fort, STICKERS, and read a few books.

When I first had Caroline I remember scrolling through blogs and pictures and thinking--my child will never have awesome pictures like this. With moving, starting med school, and big life changes I just felt so overwhelmed with things but I really wanted to capture memories of the big and fun things but also the small everyday things. When I scroll through this blog and my instagram...I am so happy! I love being a mom and wife and getting to stay home and make and create these little moments. I hope one day Caroline will look back (hopefully I'll print this blog someday) and love all the LITTLE Caroline pictures and the every day things that we do together.

SECOND Christmas

Second Christmas...YES PLEASE. It was pretty unconventional...we opted for bright wrapping paper that was no where near Christmas. I really wanted to to do a big breakfast but since all of us had been under the weather we opted for Lucky Charms...special enough! ha!  We filled stockings (I lovelovelove our mom stitched Ben and Caroline's last year...mine I've had since I was little) and wrapped gifts and it was so much fun to do another Christmas morning. Caroline is a pro at gift unwrapping and is sooooo surprised about everything. I love her so much! 

My mom totally spoiled us. Caroline got several things but the best is her new Little People zoo and a cookie and ice cream kitchen play set. We have spent HOURS playing with all of them and it's really fun to mix up a batch of cookies and then have them "hot" out of the oven" in a matter of seconds. Christmas really refreshed our playing options and it's so fun. I've been rotating toys so there's a little less mess and when a particular things is out Caroline has really been playing with it.

Wednesday, January 27, 2016

Super quick BYU STOP

We made our quick trip to BYU to see Mo and then went and visited Lauren and Dallas. Because it was Christmas break...campus was empty. Caroline had a ball running around the crunchy snow and falling down. I always forget how pretty snow makes things...and snow looks pretty swell on BYU.

Whew. I think I am FINALLY caught up on my big camera pictures. I still need to dump my phone pictures...debating on how I will document those. We had the BEST Christmas break...most likely Ben's last Christmas break ever. We loved seeing family, traveling, celebrating Christmas, and enjoying the snow!

And this one was juuuust right!

After Christmas we went to the Treehouse Museum in Ogden. Now, we've been to lots of children's museums and this one was juuuu right! A few have been to big and overwhelming and as much as we love the little museum by our house we've taken a brief hiatus because it's a little too small. We could have come here every day. There was just the right amount of things to do and explore. We got there right as they opened and left around noon--and by that time it was packed. We played and played and played and having cousins and aunts and uncles plus Granny and Bampa--made it even better!

Check Mate!

Playing with Bampa!

Saturday, January 23, 2016

Christmas Morning

I really can't explain how fun it is to do Christmas as a parent. It was so magical and Ben and I could hardly contain our excitement. We had been stocking up on gifts here and there all year. Actually we stock up all the time ha! It was such a fun morning for Caroline to wake up and see what Santa brought her. She still talks about Santa and we are still singing Rudolph the Red Nose Reindeer. She totally was an unwrapping queen and I love it. 

The pictures are a little crazy. I think another lens would have been perfect and all of our shirts were so blue that it messed with the lighting a funny how color does that. Christmas was magical. Caroline was so into everything and now we have so many things to play with. It's nice that we can rotate through things. So so glad that we got to spend our Christmas in Utah!

Cathy and Neil now own a squatty potty!

3 guys getting a Play Station to play Staw Wars

Examining all of the Princesses

Spencer and Emma

Granny kisses


This was my favorite Christmas gift. I no longer have mom guilt about not sewing a quiet book (she DID NOT sleep as a baby so there were no nap times to sew). AND I didn't have to sew one. AND Caroline loves it. 

Repunzel, Repunzel, let down your long hair. HA! I love this fake braid. 

Joey was so excited about his Buzz!

Grandma and Grandpa Van Leeuwen opened up these awesome family trees that Neil and Cathy compiled.

Lizzie took a nap and opened some presents later.

So much magic. So much family. So much fun.